10 UX Design Tips to Ensure Positive Ecommerce Experience
Online shopping means no queues, bigger variety of products and shopping whenever you like, even in the middle of the night. The keyword here is convenience and if you want online shoppers to choose your ecommerce, not the competitors, convenience must also apply to your website. That’s because before leads turn into customers, they are primarily the users of your site. If it doesn’t provide them with easy, intuitive and useful solutions, the chance they’ll buy something from your store is low. To keep it high, you have to ensure users positive experience throughout their whole user journey. How to do that? Start with these 10 UX design tips.
1. Don’t hide important information
To convince potential customers to buy something from your ecommerce, they have to trust you. And we all know it’s not an easy task to build the customers’ trust at that initial stage. If crucial information such as shipping and return terms or contact details can’t be found quickly, the users not only get frustrated, they also become suspicious — ‘Is shipping fee not shown because it’s terribly expensive?’, ‘Does this ecommerce even exists if there’s no way to contact it?’ The longer the user looks for such information, the more questions appear. If you don’t want potential customers to doubt you, make crucial information explicit and place them above the fold. That way users will not only trust you more but also appreciate the fact you didn’t waste their time on looking for information they need.
2. Show recently bought products
Do you have a bunch of regular customers who often buy the same products in your ecommerce store? Then personalizing their accounts is a good idea. If some customer visits you every month to buy a given cat food, displaying a section with recently bought products right after logging, will make their shopping easier. No time wasted on looking for the right bag size and type of the cat treat — one click and the product is in the cart. Knowing that such feature is waiting for the customer in your store, will make them more likely to come back.
3. Make sorting and filtering user-friendly
First of all, unless you sell less than a 100 products, filtering and sorting are a necessity. If you force customers to scroll for hours to find what they are looking for, you can’t expect them to have a positive experience in your ecommerce store. Filtering and sorting make finding the right type of product much faster and easier. That’s why it’s important to include as much choice options as possible and make them relevant to the products you sell. In case of filters, it’s also crucial to enable choosing multiple options so that customers can precisely specify what they need, let’s say, a red, long sleeve, cotton, mini dresses, sized M. The most user friendly design solution for filters is a dropdown that opens and closes with the click. The chosen options should remain visible and work as a sticky element. That way customer will always see what filters are applied, without the need to come back to the top of product listing page.
4. Make it possible to change the products’ display view
Your product listings page should be adjusted not only to individual shopping habits of particular customers, but also to the different contexts of visiting an ecommerce store. Some of your customer may browse quickly through page looking for a few specific products, others may want to carefully review the details of multiple items. In the first case, a long list of miniatures will be perfect on a product listings page, in the second a bigger and more precise set of information is much more convenient. What to choose then? Well, let your customer make that choice. The users will be grateful for the possibility to change the view and number of products shown on the product listings page.
5. Enable hover with more product details
The information customers are looking for on a product listings page vary. Firstly, it’s dependent on the kind of products your selling. In the case of clothes, for example, image will be more important than in the case of mobile phones where what matters most are the specifications. That’s what it seems, at least. The truth is you’ll never know for sure what information a given customer is looking for. That’s why the more information you display, the better. Since product listings pages are usually limited in space and easily become cluttered, hover providing more information is the best solution. If the user moves the cursor over a product that catches their attention, they’ll be instantly provided with more information.
6. Show recently viewed products
Shopping online and faced with a wide range of products, customers are often struggling with the choice what to buy. They think carefully, compare the items and often ask friends or family for advice. If they don’t open product pages in separate tabs, they’re forced to click back over and over again in the browser to find the product they were looking at. And if they leave the decision on what to buy for the next day, they’ll probably have to search for the products once again. In neither case, is this convenient. Showing recently viewed products is an easy UX design solution for these problems. One additional section on the side of the product page and your ecommerce gets an additional point in the customers’ eyes.
7. Enable product-related notifications
Newsletters are a good way to inform customers about important news from your ecommerce but they are rather general in nature. Usually they include exactly the same information you post on your Facebook profile. No wonder that many customers don’t sign for newsletters or ignore the emails. What most customers are more interested in are not general news but information about particular products: When will they be available again?, When will they be on sale?, When will there be a special offer on them? — that’s what most of your customers want to know. And if you care about them having positive experience in your ecommerce, simply give them what they need. It’s a good idea to Include on the product page an email icon with a droptown that lets users choose what kind of product news they want to receive. Such product-specific email notifications will provide customers with information they’re looking for. For them such messages will be a good reason to choose your ecommerce store and for you they’re another touchpoint. Two birds with one stone!
8. Let customers create sharable wishlists
Many customers don’t make a purchase decision right away: they need time to think everything over, compare prices with different ecommerce stores or consult their choices with family or friends. Of course they can bookmark the pages, but it’s not as convenient as having all the items stored in one place. The possibility to mark potentially interesting products and add them to wishlist is a great solution. If a wishlist is to be truly user-friendly make sure that the customer can share it with others online. Not only provide an email and social media share, but also enable customers to create a sharable link. Such a link will make it easier for customers to consult the purchase with others and can serve perfectly as a form of a giftlist. And though we live in a digital era, make printable version of the list available as well.
9. Highlight products that are already in cart
If your ecommerce store sells a variety of similar products that are often bought in large amounts, the users may feel confused. Let’s say a customer wants to buy few bottles of nail polish in different shades of red. When 3 bottles are already in cart and she comes back to the product page to get another one, the chance she chooses the shade she’s already got is pretty high. Even when the products aren’t so similar such situation may occur. Jumping between product categories, being distracted by a crying kid or a ringing phone, it’s easy to forget whether milk was already added to cart or not. Since it’s not very convenient to constantly check what’s in the cart, make your customers’ life easier and highlight those products on the product listing page. You can additionally add the information about the quantity of particular items — that’s useful as well.
10. Help customers go through checkout
Checkouts can be tricky and unfortunately many customers abandon the cart at some point of the checkout process. They aren’t sure how to fill the certain inputs, get frustrated with the number of fields to fill or don’t feel safe seeing the payment method they’ve never used before. That’s why it’s so important to make checkout as easy and quick to go through as possible. First of all, inform customers from the start what they’ll have to do to complete the purchase: what data they are asked to provide, what payment methods are available and what the process looks like. It’s useful to show the checkout steps in the form of a graph with a progress bar. With such a solution customers know what they’ll have to do next and get an instant confirmation on what steps have already been successfully completed. It’s also important to provide a microcopy with prompts below any inputs that may be problematic like, for example, card details. And don’t forget to mark the required fields — customers who are in a hurry will be grateful for that!
Though these are simple UX design solutions, usually quite easy to implement, their influence on customer experience is enormous. Including such user-friendly solutions on your ecommerce site will make the visitors’ interaction with your website much more satisfying. And there’s only one small step from a satisfied user to a satisfied customer.